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The Launch of Domain .HIV Creates the 'Digital Red Ribbon'

By Lynn De La Cruz

Just as the red ribbon raised awareness of HIV and AIDS, the use of the Web domain .hiv is doing the same in the digital world, even taking it one step further with each click.

DotHIV, based in Berlin, created the new domain, which launches Tuesday. For every click on a .hiv website, dotHIV will donate 0.1 cents to help HIV- and AIDS-related projects around the world.

The domain will start with sites from singer Alicia Keys's Keep a Child Alive Project, the online retailer Plus, and the ad agency Thjnk, notes a dotHIV press release. Amazon, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Samsung have also already registered .hiv domain names. Officials with dotHIV suggest that website sponsors use a .hiv site to redirect traffic to their standard site, so there is no need to create new content, but site visitors can still use their clicks to help raise funds and awareness. Nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations working on HIV and AIDS can receive a .hiv address at no charge.

Carolin Silbernagl, cofounder and CEO of the dotHIV Registry, says this domain will be among other top-level domains like .com and .org. “It will now be possible to click on .hiv addresses like Amazon.hiv, GMHC.hiv and Sport.hiv and make a difference in the fight against AIDS,” she said in the press release.

dotHIV will use the money raised from the .hiv clicks to support small, community-based organizations in grave need of funds. These include organizations in Rwanda, United States, Turkey and South Africa.

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